Are We Done Yet?

Plant silhouette on our door. Beautiful, yes?
(photo P Volker)

We have been talking about the role of observing in our search for beauty. That’s good and helpful but other factors are appearing. What about having the time to look. If our noses are constantly to the grindstone we will never see anything different. We have to allow some time. Our schedule can’t be so completely full that there is no room for some serendipity.

That surplus of time was one thing that made the Camino so special. Of course one among many. But there always seemed ample time for everything except maybe when you were trying to beat a rainstorm to town. Relaxing into ample time is such a good place. It seems hard to achieve most hours back home though. Maybe it takes active work to stay in that zone as much as possible. Worth the effort though.

Simplicity plays a role here too. Having a complicated life does not lend itself to having time. Simplicity on the Camino was a hallmark item. Everyone that was walking was in a way simpler place than where they came from. There then was time and place for magic.

That’s it though, leaving time and place for magic. Yea. Beauty is more than an object under the bright lights of a museum. Remember we were saying that it could be thought of or appear as more of a process. It could be an uncovering as something of beauty partially shrouded by fog. To see it might require a more active form of seeing or some waiting or coaxing.

To search for beauty may be more of a commitment than we first thought. It is not just something that randomly happens TO us but more of a journey or vocation. I can remember a practice that I started in Spain of staying with a beautiful scene. Just standing still and looking as long as possible. Disregarding the urge to take a pic, just looking. Being with it to fill one’s tanks.

OK, walk at 9. A beautiful morning, sunny and still cool out there.

filling one’s tanks loves, Felipé.

17 thoughts on “Are We Done Yet?”

  1. Great post. So relevant. It is so hard to just relax some times. Always something I feel needs to be done. Now. Camino was such a breathe of fresh air now only literally, but figuratively as well. Seems the business model here where we will is much different. Work, work, work. Not enough chill and reflect time. We don’t make the time enough…loved the post, Phil:)

    1. Ryck ~ right. Somehow we have to guide ourselves out of workaholicism. It only leaves you with burnout and medical problems which last time I checked aren’t cheap. Hang tough in the maw of it all. Felipé.

  2. Ahhhh. Being with Beauty. I’m trundling gently through my day and then I read that. Stopping to breathe in beauty.

    I went for a walk through Granchester Meadows this morning. Not far and it’s one of my favourite walk spots. But it was roasting hot by 9.30. And I just wanted to stop. It was beautiful and I didn’t breathe with that. Mañana.

    Funny how when we (I) are uncomfortable we (I] can’t be with anything only do. Thinking now how that applies to my cancer. How in the times of uncertainty I can’t be with it and it’s a battle.

    Being is kinder..better…


    1. Karen ~ I am going to cheerlead for you! You are doing so great! Learning to deal with, learning to manage is a big challenge. Learning to not battle is a big challenge. We are on the magical mystery tour! Felipé.x

  3. I need to find a place in my body where I can tattoo this post…

    Meanwhile, I have printed it and it is now in front of me in my desk at home, converted in home office these days.

    More often than you may realize, you are like the yellow arrows in the Camino, pointing out to where the way goes.

    Yellow Arrow Loves,

    1. Cris ~ this is the biggest compliment ever! Tattoo worthy! You are the best! Felipé.x

  4. And,as best we can tell, humans are the only conscious beings capable of seeing beauty?of course the only other beings we’ve ever encountered are on this planet so perhaps our knowledge is a tad how does a dog see a waterfall or the milky way stretching across the sky? obviously we can never know.i was reflecting on the strangeness of life a few days ago when I was reading about Carl Sagan, the astronomer and broadcaster,is seems that his grandfather was a human ferry in eastern Europe on the River Bug,I think part of the Austro Hungarian Empire then .he would for a fee piggyback people across the Bug at a shallow spot! could he, the grandfather, ever have foreseen the plaques designed by his grandson have now exited the solar system on the sides of Pioneer 10 and 11 and Voyager 1 and 2.i had to look up the Bug, it’s the border between Poland,Belarus and the Ukraine and it turns out I’d crossed it 3 times my self but by train(2x Trespol, Poland to/from Brest, Belarus) and bus(x1(I flew in) Lvov, Ukraine to Prezmyel, Poland)no piggyback’s for me!

    1. Wow Kevan, that is so expansive! An amazing story and I am stretching to accommodate it. Do you suppose you would let me put this up on the blog in the near future with some very minor editing? Felipé.

  5. Yes feel free.did you know that Carl Sagan died of cancer aged 62?it was myelodysplasia that killed him almost as daunting a name as mycosis fungoides or szerey’s syndrome! myelodysplasia is a kind of leukemia my research tells me….not the sort of thing that you want to have!

    1. Kevan ~ Sagan taught us so much. I loved his voice too. I didn’t know how he died. I will put your Sagan story up today. Thanks, Felipé.

  6. Yes he died in New York City at a cancer specialist hospital, can’t remember it’s name.he was a scientific pantheist and saw God as part of and the whole of nature.i thought that he was just a scientist but part of my lockdown reading was his book contact and in it he mentioned the German Protestant theologian Rudolph Otto and Otto’s idea of the Holy by which divinity sweeps into the human condition although I think that Otto was almost certainly a panentheist rather than a pantheist,as pantheism isn’t compatible with most forms of Christianity or Judism or Islam for that matter?in that God,to Otto,had being outside of the created order rather than just inside it? probably some kind of emanationist I should guess and I ordered a copy of the idea of the Holy but Amazon lost it!

    1. Kevan ~ you had me really working buddy. I had to heft the big old paper dictionary to keep up with you on this one. But you lost me at emanationist, what is that? Believe it or not I overheard a conversation about this in the local auto parts store yesterday. Yea, Felipé.

  7. Emanationism comes from the philosophy of the great classical philosopher, Plotinus (probably born in Alexandria about 150 AD).he died of a strange skin disease near Naples and I have often wondered if it was the lymphoma we now call Mycosis Fungoides?it was something unusual so it would probably rule out leprosy which would have been well known then?but I digress from his ideas; the emanations where from what Plato had called the Good and flowed into reality from a source some ways similar to Gnosticism but without the negative connotations whereby matter was corrupted. to Plotinus, and Plato,it wasn’t evil but it’s increasing denseness the further it flowed from the Good made it more difficult to apprehend the Good or the source of Augustine was heavily influenced by Plotinus not to mention Plato and Aristotle.this sort of heady stuff had a major influence upon Christian mysticism people like Meister Eckhart,Julia of Norwich and so on.i’d say that it’s a sort of quasi panentheism,all is God in panentheism but there’s something else too outside of reality.while with pantheism all is God and nothing outside.not to forget pandeism all was made by God of God but god’s nature has been withdrawn from the created order.the first stance makes the most sense to me put I’m open minded and my religious and philosophical stance changes like the seasons wind!one of my great grandfathers was a Church of Ireland church minister in is buried in the USA in Arlington, Virginia, which I’m told is a rather upmarket place to end up 6 foot under with a view across to Washington, DC not the state!I don’t know how he ended up there.

    1. Kevan ~ this blog over the years has been an education for me. All sorts of folks and ideas coming and going. And now you are here in the midst of it. Kathryn Barush may be writing to you any minute. I have nicknamed her Catalina and that is probably how you will see her. She is our Historian and also a grad of Oxford. Glad you are here with us. Felipé.

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